Sheppard, White, Kachergus, & DeMaggio, P.A. Attorneys & Counselors At Law
Call us anytime.
During office hours, call 904-356-9661
After office hours, call 904-727-7191

Regular office hours are 7:30 a.m. to 6:30 p.m.

What is the knock-and-announce rule?

Police in Florida and throughout the U.S. are required to follow a procedure known as the “knock-and-announce” rule. It applies to officers who are executing a search warrant and bars them from immediately forcing their way into a dwelling.

According to Cornell Law School, this rule is important in a judge’s consideration of how reasonable a search is under the Fourth Amendment, and it goes into their decision to approve a search warrant. Its guidelines are that police must knock and then identify themselves and why they are present. Then they must wait for a “reasonable time,” which is intended to give occupants the opportunity to open the door and allow police to enter.

The nation’s highest court, the Supreme Court, names a variety of reasons for following this rule. They include limiting damages to the property, protecting the dignity and privacy of the people living there and avoiding injuries to all involved, police and occupants. What the rule does not do, however, is protect residents from property seizure. Neither does it provide a blanket protection against all violations of the rule that police may commit. 

Exceptions to this rule are when a knock-and-announce would be “unreasonable,” such as when doing so opens police to risk of injury or provides residents ample time to destroy the evidence being sought. These exceptions are applied on a case-by-case basis.

Law enforcement officers may request a “no-knock” warrant ahead of time if they think an entry is validated upon serving the warrant. This is particularly the situation in felony drug cases.

This article provides information on search warrants and police procedure. However, it is not intended to be legal advice.

No Comments

Leave a comment
Comment Information
email us for a response
  1. Best Lawyers Best Law Firms US News 2020 Martindale Hubbell AV Preeminent Peer Rated for highest level of Provisional Excellence 2020 Sheppard Best Lawyers Badge Employment 2019 Sheppard Best Lawyers Badge General Practice 2019 Best Lawyers Best Law Firms US News 2018 Best Lawyers|Lawyer Of The Year WM. J. Sheppard|Criminal Defense: White-Collor|Jacksonville Florida|2018
  2. Best Lawyers Best Law Firms US News 2017 Best Lawyers|Best Law Firms US News|Criminal Defense: White-Collor|Tier 1|Jacksonville|2017 Martindale-Hubbell Client Champion Silver / 2017 Best Lawyers Best Law Firms US News 2016 Martindale Hubbell AV Preeminent peer rated for high professional achievement 2020 William J.Sheppard Best Lawyers Lawyer of the year 2014
  3. American College of Trial Lawyers The Florida Bar Board Certified Best Lawyers Linking Lawyers And Clients Worldwide AV Martindale Hubbell Peer Review Rated For Ethical Standards and Legal Ability Super Lawyers

Sheppard, White, Kachergus, & DeMaggio, P.A. Attorneys & Counselors at Law.
215 N. Washington Street
Jacksonville, FL 32202

Phone: 904-727-7191
Phone: 904-356-9661
Fax: 904-356-9667
Map & Directions

Regular office hours are 7:30 a.m. to 6:30 p.m.

Back to top